Prophet, Priest, and King in Biblical History (Part 3 of 4)
In the first post of this series, we looked at how what we’ve been calling the “threefold office” of prophet, priest, and king, looking especially at how these offices were originally patterned (in Eden). In the second post, we looked at how the offices played out in the history of Old Testament Israel. Now we turn to take a look at how these offices find their ultimate fulfillment in Jesus Christ.
The most interesting aspect of unpacking how Christ fulfills these offices is realizing that Christ is actually the very one whom the offices are patterned after. To state that another way, the offices, say, of the Kingship, wasn’t something that Christ looked at and asked Himself how he would fulfill it. Instead, ever since Adam, Kings were to image God, and Christ is the fullness of the godhead in bodily form.
Prophet- Christ is the ultimate word from the Father (John 1:1). In fact, He is God’s final word of revelation (Heb. 1:1). Christ proclaimed the truth of God’s word to the people to whom He ministered, and that considered of words of consolation as well as words of judgment (cf. Matt. 23). Christ spoken with an authority that no other religious leader spoke with. Others taught, “Such-and-such said..,” but Christ proclaimed, “You have heard it said…but I say unto you…” (see the Sermon on the Mount)
Priest- John chapter 17 is a great place to see Christ, the great High Priest, at work, interceding for those “whom that Father gave” Him. Likewise, in an extended section on His priesthood, the epistle to the Hebrews explains that not only is Christ the great and final High Priest for the people of God, but, paradoxically, He is also the final sacrifice for sin! The work of Jesus on our behalf atones for the various and myriad ways in which we have failed to be faithful images of God. And finally, as Priest, Christ in the final one through whom God’s blessing is ministered to the world. As in the promise to Abraham, all the nations of the world will be blessed through Christ Jesus.
King– Jesus is indeed both the Son of David, and the Son of Man, the one in Daniel 7 given dominion over all the earth. As the faithful image of God, King Jesus righteously represented the rule of God (“If you’ve seen me, you’ve seen the Father.”) Also, as King, Jesus defeated His enemies through His work on the cross (Col. 2:15, 1 Jn. 3:8, Heb. 2:14, Rev. 20:1-3). During is ministry this was demonstrated by His numerous exorcisms, essentially showing Satan and his minions “whose boss.” Now, and forever more, Christ Jesus is the “King of Kings and the Lord of Lords.”